THE BOOK REPORT: Somebody Scream! By Marcus Reeves

Somebody Scream!
Rap Music’s Rise to Prominence in the Aftershock of Black Power

Marcus Reeves
Faber and Faber, Inc.

Music journalist Marcus Reeves has written a stunning account of the history of rap music and the genre’s rise to the top of the charts in the “aftershock” of the Black Power Movement. The tome titled Somebody Scream! is not just a dry recitation of dates and doings. His musings are personal, even affectionate at times. Reeves sets the scene by looking back on when he realized his place in society was as a child of the post-Black Power movement – a member of a generation that would find their voice, not in political parties, but in the rhymes and flow of rap. The book captures all the seminal moments – the beginnings of the hip-hop movement on Bronx street corners to the meteoric rise and deadly fall (Tupac Shakur) of some of its most cherished sons – while always retaining a steadfast critical eye. Reeves openly discusses the genre’s failings and is unafraid to end on a note questioning whether or not rap has seen its glory days, sacrificing a relevant message in favor of the almighty dollar.

Amy Wagner

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